Sedum adolphi, commonly known as Golden Sedum, is an incredibly versatile rangy color accent in succulent landscapes, borders, and along pathways or spilling out of planters. Star-shaped white flowers add winsome contrast to the greenish-yellow leaf color, which sparkles golden orange in intense light. It is a bushy plant in bright sunlight. In the shade, stems tend to trail. White flowers appear on leafy stalks at the stem tips.
This lovely high colored tender succulent is a good ground cover in frost-free areas. Golden Sedum is most often grown as a houseplant or an attractive outdoor container plant where it can be protected during the winter. It is hardy from USDA hardiness zones 9 through 11.
The late Henk 't Hart and Bert Bleij wrote the Sedum section in the lexicon "Illustrated Handbook of Succulent Plants: Crassulaceae" and noted Sedum nussbaumerianum to be very similar if not identical to S. adolphi. Robert Clausen in "Sedum of North America North of the Mexican Plateau" treated them as separate species in his book based on small differences in the inflorescences. S. nussbaumerianum has flowers all in the same plane, while S. adolphi has petals at different levels in cymes. However, the facts indicate that S. nussbaurianum should be regarded as a synonym of S. adolphi. The two plants have the same chromosome count, they came from plants grown from the same source (seeds gathered by Carl Purpus in 1907), and both have corymbiform inflorescences. With the priority of 12 years, Sedum adolphi is the valid name.
Growing Conditions and General Care
Choose a location with full sun to filtered shade. Golden Sedums is an ideal plant for rock gardens because it spreads quickly with a low trailing form. At maturity, it stands up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall and spread up to 2 feet (60 cm). Golden Sedum can also be used in mixed container gardens or even on walls or terraces.
This succulent tolerates most soils but thrives in light, slightly sandy, well-draining soils. In soggy, water-logged soils, the roots rot, and the plants suffer disease and pest problems. Plant Golden Sedum 2 feet (60 cm) apart. Combine this plant with other succulents or low-growing, drought-tolerant groundcovers.
Golden Sedum is drought tolerant once it establishes a deep root system. The best way to water this plant is to use the "soak and dry" method. Get the soil completely wet, and then wait until the soil is dry before watering again. Fertilize annually with a balanced fertilizer. Apply the fertilizer to the soil in spring as new growth appears, according to package directions.
Trim back with a string trimmer to remove flowers if the plant starts to look untidy. Divide Golden Sedum every four years to encourage new growth.
There are three ways to effectively propagate Golden Sedum: from seed, leaf cuttings, and stem cuttings.
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